Plaka, Agora, Hadrian’s Library & Temple of Zeus | Athens
Being in Athens you definitely have to go to the tourist area – Plaka. It is a charming street, where there is no shortage of bars, restaurants and shops. You can buy here everything that a tourist’s heart desires: from shoes and clothes, through jewellery, handicrafts or home accessories, to local food and alcohol. We walked around the area of Plaka and managed to find a unique flea market. Fans of antiques and searching for pearls in a haystack would without a doubt spend a good few hours here. We also were fascinated by the amount of old furniture, home decorations, jewellery or various trinkets. With more time, we would probably buy something special. However, we wanted to visit several places in Athens before going to the port and a further trip to the island of Andros.
An important place in our program was Agora of Athens located close to the Acropolis. Agora was in the ancient times a place of trade, gatherings and debates. This vast area was chosen as the ideal place for meetings of the Athenians in the time of Solon. Today, the trail of time is very visible. One of the better-preserved buildings is the Temple of Hephaestus. Entry to Agora costs 8 EUR per person, and it is worth spending here a few hours.
The next place on our list was Hadrian’s Library, which was built in the 2nd century BC by the Roman Emperor Hadrian. Admission costs 4 EUR, but you can well see it from the streets around, so we decided not to buy a ticket.
As the last point in the program, we chose the Temple of Zeus – the largest temple of ancient Greece. As the name suggests, the temple was dedicated to Zeus. The temple was built on a huge stylobate, supported on a total of 108 columns and probably was not covered with a roof.
Admission costs 6 EUR. You can also buy a special combination ticket for 30 EUR, which includes the following buildings:
Acropolis of Athens
Ancient Agora of Athens and Museum of the Ancient Agora
Kerameikos and Archaeological Museum of Kerameikos
Archaeological Site of Lykeion
North and South Slope of Acropolis
Olympieio (which includes the arch of Hadrian and the Temple of Zeus)
Roman Agora of Athens
When can you visit those places for free?
6 March (in memory of Melina Mercouri)
18 April (International Monuments Day)
18 May (International Museums Day)
The last weekend of September annually (European Heritage Days)
Every first Sunday from November 1st to March 31st